When all this crap got started, animal owners should not have tried to "prove" anything to the animal rights activists, not one thing. Whenever humans try to talk to these bullies, there is one expectation, one way that it goes: No one realistically expects the animal rights activists to be swayed by science or any kind of rationality, reason, or evidence. The human being is expected to be swayed by science, rationality, reason, and evidence. However, this expectation comes from a bully who does not feel obligated to tell the truth. The science is bogus. The evidence is manufactured and tainted. Going through the process is an act of submission in the eyes of the bully. Submitting anything to them, evidence, science, anything, is an act of submission and in their view you have already lost.
This is why the animal loving community should have made firm decisions a long time ago. We should have decided that almost every human being is good enough to have an animal, outside of being habitual, egregious abusers who routinely injure animals sadistically. We should have decided not to be swayed by arguments about "safety." None of us should ever have backed down, which is of course why the bullies pick on the safest targets that they can. A lot of us became cowardly and even lazy, using the attacks against us as an excuse. It's easier to take the path of excusing one's ownlack of ambition or lack of courage. A lot of authority got handed off way too easily.
It was as simple as saying that we can tolerate the dangers of owning tigers. It was as simple as telling the press that tragic deaths are part of living and should be no cause for any sweeping changes; general policy should not be made from sweeping changes. It was as simple as telling the world that it is wrong to bully others for owning the animals that they love.
Maybe it still is.
That is all that people like Carole Baskin have been doing. They've been telling government officials what they want and giving reasons. The reasons haven't been truly honest. They appeal to least-common-denominator thinking like "it's dangerous, please keep it away from me I'm so scared I'm wetting my pants." This kind of thing has to be backed by the usual violence and vandalism for it to have taken the hold that it seems to have. Also, I think that the government officials have to have been compromised in the first place.
Animal lovers didn't want to get into politics in the first place but we let other people do politics. Didn't we know that this would lead to deadly consequences?